Corporate website: how to make it in 5 useful steps

For a company today, it is essential to have an online presence, and a company website is a tool that one can no longer do without.

Millions of potential customers are online every day. Whether you want to promote a brand or sell directly online, you cannot do without a fully functioning and highly effective corporate website in terms of communication.

Various more or less effective solutions for the creation of successful professional websites are constantly being proposed on the Net. But which solution to choose? How to create a company website and make it simple and straightforward?

In this free guide, you will discover:

  • What are the advantages of having a corporate website;
  • What features a website must have in order to be effective and professional;
  • The 5 basic steps to create a quality website to support your business.

Furthermore, if you want to create your corporate website yourself, you can rely on us! Specializing through the Web Content Manager Course will give you the skills you need to create your corporate website and manage it effectively.

Do you want to set up a professional website? Request a free strategic consultation with an industry expert!

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Corporate website: what it is and why to have it

Technically, a website is a set of web pages, of related documents that are placed within the same structure and that can be reached by the user using a device such as a smartphone or a computer equipped with a web browser.

But beyond the technicalities, we can define the corporate website as a strategic web marketing tool for SMEs, a sort of virtual home that users and potential customers can visit to find out who you are, what you do, what products and services you offer, how they can buy them, and how to get in touch

Creating an efficient and professional website has become a real necessity for both large companies and small and medium-sized enterprises that need to promote themselves and make themselves known on the market.

There are several advantages of a corporate website, it can enable the company to:

  • obtain immediate visibility, including through real-time sharing on various social channels;
  • reach different types of targets, both national and international;
  • give credibility to their brand and establish trust with users;
  • obtain information on customers, their habits, and their tastes, and understand which pages are visited the most.

That is why the importance of a well-done corporate website should not be underestimated. But what are the characteristics it must possess? Let’s find out now.

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Features of a corporate website

What are the characteristics of a quality corporate website? Having a beautiful corporate website, with a modern and graphically appealing style, is a good starting point, but it takes much more to achieve concrete results.

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It is indeed necessary to create an online platform that meets high standards:

  • Usability: a company’s website must offer a smooth user experience. This means that it must be user-friendly in all its functionalities by the user. It must be defined according to simple and straightforward navigation paths. It must be dynamic, comprehensive, and up-to-date in terms of information and content. It must be readable with clear, streamlined, and non-redundant graphical and textual elements.
  • Responsiveness: a corporate website must be responsive, i.e. able to adapt correctly to views on various devices (desktop, tablet, smartphone). Pages must be light and load quickly (it is very important to reduce the weight of images and videos).
  • Speed: the loading time of web pages is crucial to ensure a good user experience on the site. Google itself considers this a key factor and it is therefore very important to pay attention to this aspect.
  • Accessibility: A website must be able to be used effectively by people with disabilities. All audio-visual elements must always have a text equivalent (the alt or alternative text for images) readable by screen readers. Don’t use fonts that are too small and with grayscale (sans serif fonts such as Arial and Verdana are better). Do not use many colors and, in any case, they should be combined in such a way as to preserve a sufficient level of contrast. Also avoid too many moving elements, as well as bright and flashing effects.
  • Optimization: a site must be rich in textual information and other quality multimedia content. They must be attractive and interesting to users and must also be optimized according to Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) techniques for effective positioning in search engines such as Google.
  • Compliance: when setting up a corporate website, it is essential to pay attention to legal aspects and thus to specify information as stipulated by legislation (e.g. Article 42 of Law No. 88/2009 or the recent GDPR).

How to create a corporate website in 5 steps

As you may have noticed, there are many aspects to be taken care of when setting up a corporate website, so it is essential to have an operational plan, a guide that shows you the steps to follow to achieve an excellent result.

Curious to know what steps to take? Here they are in the following paragraphs.

Defining the objective

The first aspect to take care of when you decide to create your corporate website is to define the objective. That is, you must answer the question: what do I need a corporate website for?

The creation of corporate websites and the strategic positioning of a company must start from an analysis of the needs and strategic objectives of your business in relation to a series of factors.

These include the type of product or service sold, the characteristics of the target market, the socio-agraphic specificities and online surfing habits of the target customers, and the economic and technological resources available.

Such a thorough analysis will enable you to clarify why your company website is needed and what its purpose is.

Typically one decides to create a corporate website for one or more of the following reasons:

  • Make your brand known, nurture, and measure the interest and consideration of users towards your brand.
  • Promoting corporate business and publicizing various activities and initiatives.
  • Selling products and services directly through e-commerce solutions.
  • Manage relations with customers, suppliers, and other stakeholders, using the site as the main 24-hour channel for information, communication, and customer care.

Defining the purpose for which you are designing the website for your company at an early stage is very important because it will also help you identify which technologies are the most suitable to choose in order to achieve the objective effectively.

Choice of technology

Once you have identified the target, you will have to make choices in terms of technology. Let us briefly look at the main elements to consider.

First, you will have to choose a name for your site, which could be the name of your company or business. Directly linked to this activity is the choice of a domain name, i.e. the web address of your site.

It is important that the name is easy to remember, and it is also important to choose the final extension of the address correctly.

In this regard, you might choose .it if you are addressing an audience, while you might opt for a .com if your company operates internationally or if you plan to create a company website for online sales.

Another technological element to which you must pay attention is the choice of hosting, i.e. the physical space on which the website is hosted. This choice varies greatly depending on the type of requirement and the complexity of the project.

Once these choices have been made, there remains one last important element to deal with, namely: which software or technology do I use to create my corporate website? Let me explain.

To create your website from scratch, you may decide to use expensive professional web & graphic design software (e.g. from the Adobe Creative Cloud).

However, they require at least basic knowledge of computer languages such as HTML, CSS, XML, javascript, java, and PHP.

creating website

You may, instead, decide to turn to open-source software to succeed in creating a website for free. These are the Content Management Systems (CMS), user-friendly platforms supported by large communities of developers that provide a wealth of resources, extensions, tutorials, and guides.

CMSs are easily customizable through the installation of graphic themes and plug-ins of all kinds (free or paid), from those for SEO optimization to those for web analytics management.

The most important CMSs include WordPress, Joomla, and Drupal for websites and blogs and Magento for e-commerce.

In general, the most widely used platform is definitely WordPress, with which it is very easy to create a professional company website. You have 2 options at your disposal:

  1. WordPress.com: a free version of WordPress that can be managed through the hosting service of Automattic (the holding company of WP), but which has numerous customization limitations.
  2. WordPress.org: the open source version of WordPress downloadable from the site, fully customizable and installable on a web space provided by a hosting provider of your choice. To learn more about the features and functionality of WP and to get more precise instructions on installing and using the CMS, download our very useful WordPress Guide.

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Defining the structure of the corporate website

Very often this is an aspect that is underestimated; however, the structure of the website is an extremely important element, not only from a technical point of view (a good structure is also important for SEO) but also and above all from a strategic point of view.

Defining the structure of the site means identifying in a reasoned manner how many and which pages it will consist of, how they will be linked together, what content will be on these pages, and what the precise purpose of each page will be.

Basically, the pages that the corporate website must have are:

  • Homepage: this must be designed structurally, stylistically, and in terms of content in such a way that it appeals to users. Communication especially of “who we are” and “what we do” must be clear and effective. Users must be stimulated to continue browsing the site through links to other pages.
  • Products & Services page: this must describe the company’s commercial offerings in an intriguing, yet simple, precise, and essential manner. It must explain why its products/services are unique or better than those of its competitors. The user must be strategically guided to click call-to-action buttons. For example: “buy now”, “subscribe to the newsletter”, and “request a quote”. The objective is essentially to increase lead generation and conversions (e.g. number of customers completing the purchase).
  • Contact form, chat, forum, Whatsapp number: these contact and, more generally, customer care tools/services are also necessary with a view to customer retention (lead nurturing).
  • “Where we are” page: a Google Map, accompanied by clear textual indications on the geo-location of the company, must never be missing from a quality company website. This is even more true in the case of corporate local marketing strategies.

Web design and SEO

The website is your business card: it often represents the first impression the user makes of you and it is important that it has a design that is well cared for and consistent with your brand.

It is also important that the user can easily find your website when doing a search. Therefore, it is very important that your corporate website has:

  • Modern style and eye-catching graphics: in general, the style and graphics of the entire site must always be adapted to the tastes, expectations, socio-and graphic characteristics, and surfing habits of the target audience. It is certainly preferable for a corporate website to also look good. However, this must not compromise usability and accessibility standards.
  • Quality and Seo-oriented content: a site must be rich in textual information and other multimedia content. They must be attractive and interesting to users and must also be optimized according to Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) techniques for effective positioning in search engines such as Google.

Management of the corporate website

A quality corporate website is such if it contributes significantly to optimizing the economic and financial results of one’s business. Therefore, it should be managed as the core of a multi-channel web marketing strategy.

In connection with the site, a number of other online tools/channels functional to the strategic objectives are to be used in an integrated and coordinated manner. We indicate some of them.

website management

To boost brand awareness and increase traffic to the site through content marketing actions:

  • Corporate blog: to increase traffic to the site.
  • Company pages on major social media such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, YouTube, Google+, and Instagram.
  • SEO activities for optimizing the positioning of web pages on major search engines, primarily Google.

For lead generation, i.e. to obtain contact lists of customers interested in products/services:

  • Contact form for info request.
  • Pop over an Optin Form for subscribing to newsletters and RSS feeds, or for downloading brochures and product demos, etc.

To foster conversions of potential customers into actual customers:

  • Shop E-commerce (e.g. Magento, WooCommerce).
  • Email Marketing can be implemented via contact forms with autoresponder systems and/or Direct Email Marketing platforms (e.g. Mailchimp).
  • SEM campaigns, i.e. web and social advertising activities (on Google AdWords, Facebook Ads, etc.) linked to specific landing pages.

Managing a corporate website effectively, however, also implies constant monitoring of user navigation in relation to certain Key Performance Indicators (e.g. number of navigation sessions, number of clicks, etc.).

This data can only be collected by integrating the site with powerful web analytics tools such as Google Analytics and Google Search Console. Thanks to these, it is possible to make technical-structural and/or content-related changes to optimize the expected performance.

What to learn to make a corporate website

By reading this article, you have by now realized what the main characteristics of an effective corporate website are and that the skills required to achieve a good result are diverse: knowledge of CMSs such as WordPress, UX skills, SEO skills, etc.

So how do you go about creating the website yourself? How to acquire the necessary specialized skills? There is a solution!

Through our extensive training offer (e.g. read the program of our WordPress course or the Digital Marketing Master Program), you will find the best solution to be able to design, realize and effectively manage a professional website for your company in a short time.

Would you like to receive more information? Contact us by clicking the button!

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